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When your baby is born, he or she is entitled to a range of routine health checks and tests. These include:
Most babies are healthy and won't have any of the conditions or problems that the screening tests are looking for. But for those babies that do have a health problem, the benefits of screening can be enormous. Early treatment can improve the baby's health and prevent severe disability or even death.
The checks and tests are quick and won't harm your baby. We will need your consent will be required for your baby to have the checks and tests.
After birth all babies are examined by the midwife. A more detailed physical examination of your baby will be undertaken by a specialist midwife or by a paediatrician within 6 to 72 hours of birth and again at 6 to 8 weeks old (usually by the GP). As well as being a top-to-toe physical check, these examinations help identify those babies who may have a problem with their eyes, heart, hips and in boys, testicles. The GP should examine the baby between 6-8 weeks after birth.
Read more about what's involved in NHS Newborn Physical Examinations.
A very small number of babies are born with hearing loss. Your baby will be given a quick and simple test to check their hearing. Identifying hearing loss early will ensure that babies and parents can get the support they need and help the development of the child's language and social skills.
Read more about NHS Newborn Hearing Screening Tests.
When your baby is between 5 and 8 days old, the newborn bloodspot screening test will be offered to your baby. This involves taking a sample of blood from their heel. All babies are tested for:
Read more about the NHS Blood Spot Test.